ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS

Report: Ryne Nelson wins D-backs’ No. 5 starting rotation spot, Jameson to bullpen

Mar 26, 2023, 10:49 AM

Ryne Nelson...

Ryne Nelson (Arizona Sports/Alex Weiner)

(Arizona Sports/Alex Weiner)

The Arizona Diamondbacks will reportedly be moving forward with RHP Ryne Nelson as the team’s No. 5 starter in the rotation, MLB.com’s Steve Gilbert said Sunday.

With Nelson winning the last starting spot, RHP Drey Jameson will move to the bullpen to open the year.

The D-backs will start the regular season on Thursday in Los Angeles against the Dodgers for a four-game series. This means Nelson is slotted to start game No. 5 against the San Diego Padres and Nick Martinez on April 3.

Nelson finished 2022 with a 1.47 ERA, 0.81 WHIP and 16 strikeouts in 18.1 innings across three games. During 2023’s Cactus League campaign, he posted a 7.53 ERA and 1.95 WHIP.

Jameson started on Thursday against the Dodgers in spring training and was hit with three runs in the first inning. He recovered, allowing four earned runs on four hits and four walks over 4.1 innings.

He pitched in just four games in 2022 with Arizona, going 3-0 with a 1.48 ERA, 1.11 WHIP and 8.9 strikeouts per nine innings.

Despite moving Jameson to the bullpen, he may be used in starting role throughout the season as Arizona used multiple starters, veterans and youngsters, throughout the year.

With the announcement, The D-backs rotation will look as follows:

— No. 1 Zac Gallen
— No. 2 Merrill Kelly
— No. 3 Madison Bumgarner
— No. 4 Zach Davies
— No. 5 Ryne Nelson

Arizona also announced outfielder Pavin Smith and infielder Emmanuel Rivera were optioned to Triple-A Reno on Sunday, while catcher P.J. Higgins and others were sent to Minor League camp.

With the three players departure from the Major League camp, outfielder Kyle Lewis and catcher Jose Herrera seem to be locked in to the final roster spots.

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